conducted via E-Mail by Darklight on May 15, 2004
When did you first start listening to industrial music?
Tommy T.: I guess it started with early new wave in the 80's as I was a kid getting into music back then, and I have always loved electronic music. First industrial bands I got into were Skinny Puppy and Front Line Assembly.
What did you do before you started DSBP?
T.: I was a heavy metal musician in several bands including
When did you start DSBP, Cyberage Radio, Diverje and in-FUSED?
Tommy T.: I was really getting into the "new wave" of Industrial music in 1992-1996, and in 1995 I started doing Cyberage Radio on KUNM, and getting away from the "heavy metal band lineup"...and started writing electronic music, and soon after bought an Ensoniq TS-10 and started writing, and it just grew from there I guess...so I would say it all started around 1995.
How many people are involved in running DSBP?
T.: I run most of the stuff here myself, and thanks to Cyb0burnt
How do you decide what bands to sign to DSBP?
T.: I sign bands that I am really impressed with and cannot
keep out of my
How is DSBP involved with the labels Backscatter and Optikon Rekords?
Tommy T.: We have done a few releases together and help each other get more fans and support. We are labels run by guys who are doing the same kinda thing, and that agree on a lot of basic principles and music styles. It is also a nice advantage to this financially, and helps keep things a bit less heavy on one guy or label.
How does downloading and copying music hurt a small music label like DSBP?
Tommy T.: Downloading and copying music has definately hurt the sales of DSBP, and many many other record labels big and small...it's pretty naive to think or say it hasn't..."why buy it if you can get it for free online"?? That is the way of thinking now for the most part, and for the trendy sheeplike creatures that inhabit this earth mostly.
Filesharing and all the illegal pirating is just growing and growing and growing...that can be denied by some, but it is reality when it comes down to it, and the more intelligent and logical people do know this...the people that like synthetic/electronic music are for the most part "computer literate, and knowledgeable", and can find the songs, bands, albums they want usually with little effort for free...and they do.
Then on the other hand...society is training people just to download music instead of supporting the cd's. This is about corporate giants like Pepsi, Coca Cola, and the like using music to make themselves more money and somehow convincing a very stupid nation that downloading music off the internet is the "new way to go", and paying a $.99 per track to them (the corporate companies who are not concerned with helping the musicians, just themselves).This is just commercializing and giving the corporates more power over us all in the long run, and I find it saddening that so many people have taken to this crappy ipod, itunes trend...what a sham!! It's the same old commercial shitty music too...on tv and radio...people need to wake up to this stupidity!! I don't bother with that crap...not when I have over 10,000 cd's here that I have bought or traded for, and enjoy very much for more than it just being "ear candy". I respect the heart, work, passion, sweat, tears and creativity put into the good albums from bands I like. I think that the whole "downloading society" has really made the musicians less of an artist and more of a "product off the assembly line" with not much value, cause it's so easy to get for free if you try. Just look at pop music? Do you think that's real or a fucking corporate brainwash upon all the conservative family and trendy types in this world.
I feel good when I buy a new CD for the low price of $10-12 as much as it costs for a 12 pack of beer...yet people don't complain about ALL the fucking beer they waste money on and all the stupid things they do....a CD is forever if you know how to treat them. What a world of hypocrisy...makes me sick.
Diverje and in-FUSED are both your own industrial music projects. How are they different?
Tommy T.: Good one...well, the projects are bit different but with some common link and connection done purposely for the fans of both. Diverje is a project which I do alot of collaborating on with other like minded electro-industrial/ebm musicians...I like to have a bit of variety through each album for sure, but I like to keep it a solid form, and cohesive mix of sounds and tracks. Mainly in the traditional electro-industrial style with splashes of diversity and a different vocal approach than most as well. I like adding in some d'n'b, power noise, and metal oriented style and attitude to the mix at times. I'm definitely not writing pop tunes here.
in-FUSED is a solo project in which I like to call it "electronic freeforming" through styles that I enjoy from listening to so much music and DJ'ing at KUNM/Cyberage radio for 9 years, I have really become intrested in lots of music. On the debut cd I did some old school electro, d'n'b, power noise, hard industrial, and doses of trance and glitch sounds. So in-FUSED is more unpredictable, and about 50% instrumental music as well, where Diverje is about 95% vocal oriented electro-industrial music. I want to keep them different...
There's a lot of anger and aggression in Diverje and in-FUSED songs. Would you say that these projects are a way for you to vent your frustrations?
Tommy T.: Yes indeed....and all the other emotions as well. Anger and hate are real emotions, and lots of people deny ever feeling that, but they are denying a part of their real emotions. I think I feel alot of anger and frustration with this world in its current state, and the way the corporate business people and commercial media/music and the government have really made this planet quite unbearable. I talk about it, I scream about it, and chant about it in my songs, and that's what gets me feeling good, and "letting it out".
Diverje and in-FUSED are primarily hard and heavy electro-industrial projects. Have you thought of starting another project that explores the lighter side of electronic music such as EBM and/or synth-pop?
Tommy T.: Well, we do some lighter stuff in both projects I think. Songs like "In my shell", "Hiding", "Stronger" and "Amphibian" totally show a more melodic side to Diverje, without being wimpy and "I love you" songs...hehehe Not as common as a full synthpop album or DM cover band album...but I don't want to really regurgitate even more of that simple pop formula that may work on a dance floor but gets boring to listen to. Most of my time spent listening to music is "listening", not dancing...music is great anytime, when working especially...and the stronger albums and bands stand out amongst the "candy coated futurepop", and other trendy styles of music.
Kindel of Liquefaction is a good friend of yours. Have you thought of starting a music project with her that offers both male and female vocals?
Tommy T.: Yes, Kindel and I are very close...for about 3 years now :-) I have done a couple tracks with her on the Liquefaction "Chrysalis" album, and I know we will do some collaborations in the future. It will be a fun project or songs for our own projects for sure. We work well together for sure. She is very talented and a great addition to the DSBP roster for sure!
Could you please explain what Cyberage Radio is?
Tommy T.: Cyberage Radio (http://www.cyberage.cx) is my radio show I been doing on KUNM for 9 years now. We have each 5 hour show archived and put online after the show airs live, and it's up there for a years time for people to listen to and get familiar with these great bands that they need to support! I try to cover the best range I can in a cohesive flowing format. Cyberage plays alot of electro-industrial, EBM, synthpop, coldwave, experimental, power noise, and some d'n'b, and darker trance as well. We were the first "electro-industrial show" to debut online in 1997 and had a lot of people getting in touch with us on how to do it. It's nice to be on top of a new market like that. Over the years we have gained thousands of steady listeners and great support worldwide on Cyberage radio LIVE (http://kunm.org) and Cyberage radio archives.
What do you think of the current industrial/heavy electro music scene?
Tommy T.: I think there's a lot of great bands that need to be discovered more. I also feel there's a lot of clone bands and overrated stuff that's just kinda predictable sounding..."try to be evil and scary" its all been done before in the traditional sense. I like bands who show true passion, conviction, and aggression and deal in reality and this worlds many issues and problems. There's a lot of stuff that just gets a lot of sales cause of the name of the label they are on, and I would like to see more of the electro-industrial fans support the good music again! The futurepop trend is getting old...3 years ago.
Where do you see industrial/heavy electro music going in the future?
Tommy T.: I see it going up and getting more fans and support. Most bands of this genre deal in reality and do it with some fierce intensity and can bring the clubs into a frenzy if given the right support and spins. I do see the pop trends dying out, and this darker music getting more exposure and real support. I do feel it is on the up and up though, even if sales don't show it. If not, we'll still do it anyways of course. This is where the heart is.
What interests do you have other than music?
Tommy T.: I am interested in some unusual things, such as my hobby of building ponds, and housing many amphibians, turtles, beardies, fish, and other creatures. I have a nice sized zoo growing at home here, and it's nice to not have to go anywhere to see all this wonderful wildlife. They are fun pets and quite a change from the greedy and corrupt human race. I am interested in science fiction movies, good thrillers, and lots of baseball games get watched here through the years also.
What can we expect from DSBP, Diverje and in-FUSED in 2004 and beyond?
Tommy T.: We will be promoting the latest albums from both bands all summer here. in-FUSED "Misplaced" is doing well on the CMJ charts for college radio and getting great reviews on webzines as well. We will be getting this sound heard more and hopefully getting in some remixes and working on new in-FUSED for a 2005 release...I want this one to be more EBM and dancey at times, or trancey with distortions and heavy industrial twists...and instrumental tracks covering 50% of the album as well. It's nice to be excited about the solo project! Thanks to all who have listened!
Diverje is hard at work on the 6th album and the writing for it is halfway done. "Distortion Chamber" should come out in late 2004 if we can get it right. It will be the hardest sounding Diverje disc in many years...lots of aggression, and harsh and unpredictable electro-industrial with some good dancey tracks in for good measure and cause Diverje is always a bit diverse and loves having melody and harshness combined within.
We just released the Diverje vs. Soul Circuit "Stronger" ltd. edition remix album with 8 remixes of "Stronger" (one of the more melodic dance tracks from "Amphibian") and 7 various tracks from both bands battling back and forth. This album has a more melodic feel overall, and we like to mix it up. We will be promoting that one and "Amphibian" is still catching new ears on its weird froggy conceptual theme...and of course for the hard and diverse electronic music it has released upon all swamps worldwide!
Thanks for the interview, and great support over there! I love being Wrapped in Wire! Better than being wrapped in plastic, that's for sure.